LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS / Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights [online 3-21-2016]

MARCH 21, 2016

  • Liquor license transfers
  • 2015 CH Police Department report
  • Zoning variances
  • HOME funds
  • Women Out Walking (WOW)
  • Special assessments
  • Bond sales
  • Purchases
  • Pedestrian and bicycle transportation for schoolchildren
  • RNC cooperative public safety services
  • Heights Libraries 100th anniversary

All council members were present.

Liquor license transfers

The Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control received two applications to transfer permits:

  • Transfer D1, D2, D3 and D6 permits from Inglewood Group, LLC, doing business as Rockefeller’s, 3099 Mayfield Road, upper level, to Forest Hill Kitchen, LLC, at the same address.
  • Transfer D2, D2X, D3 and D6 permits from Cedarmount Foods,  LLC, doing business as Mad Greek Restaurant (and patio), 2464-72-74 Fairmount Blvd., to Russo Heights Holding, LLC, at the same address.

2015 CH Police Department report

Police Chief Annette Mecklenburg presented the police department’s 2015 year-end report. It provided statistics on staffing levels; calls for service (41,030 in 2015, up 13,000 from 2014 due to changes in the way calls are logged and labeled); calls [regarding] animals; motor vehicle accidents; arrests for operating a vehicle while under the influence; crime rates (robbery, assault, burglary and theft were all down in 2015); adult arrests (2,019, which were up slightly) and juveniles arrests (411, which were down slightly). She also described the activities of the community response team, the crime suppression team, the special response team, the juvenile diversion program, and the Cleveland Heights Police Academy.

Zoning variances

Council granted zoning variances to:

  • Tyler Katz and Joshua Chefitz, 3126 Scarborough Road, to permit the front addition of steps, and an unenclosed porch to extend 14-feet into the front yard.
  • Vince Reddy, 908 Vineshire Road, to permit one enclosed parking space where a minimum of two enclosed spaces are required.

Council also granted a use variance to conditionally permit a lodging house in a former rectory at Imani Temple Ministries, 2475 North Taylor Road.

HOME funds

Council passed a resolution to increase by $72,737 the HOME funds, issued by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) through Cuyahoga County and administered locally by the Home Repair Resource Center, for the city’s down payment assistance program. This brings the total amount of funds available to $160,737. The program enables qualifying city residents to receive a loan of up to $10,000.

Women Out Walking (WOW)

Mayor Cheryl Stephens called attention to Women Out Walking (WOW), a new, 12-week healthy lifestyle program beginning in mid-April under the auspices of the Parks and Recreation Department and sponsored by MetroHealth and Walgreens. The program encourages women to walk daily (individually or in teams) and to log their steps on the city website. More information is available at www.clevelandheights.com.

Special assessments

State law mandates the city to periodically inform city homeowners by certified letter of the continuation of infrastructure taxes, which are not new and for which there is no change in the amounts that property owners must pay. This time, though, fewer residents will receive the letter, as the city will now send them every two years to 3,500 addresses instead of every three years to 11,000 addresses, as was the previous practice. The notifications will include the assessments, which were approved by council, for:

  • A portion of the expense of street lighting at the annual rate of 92 cents per front foot.
  • A portion of the expense of street and parkway improvements including grading, draining, curbing, paving, repaving, repairing, sweeping or cleaning, removing snow, and planting, maintaining and removing shade trees. The annual rate will be $1.08 per front foot.

Bond sales

Council heard a first reading of five ordinances pertaining to the issuance and sale of bonds for the city’s 2016 capital improvement program in the following maximum principal amounts:

  • $125,000 for acquiring and improving motor vehicles and related equipment for use by the fire department
  • $110,000 for acquiring motor vehicles and related equipment for the police department
  • $205,000 for acquiring and installing computer hardware, software, and related equipment for the city’s management and administrative functions
  • $375,000 for acquiring motor vehicles and equipment for the public works department
  • $785,000 for resurfacing and other improvements to city-owned parking lots and driveways


Council approved the acquisition of equipment through the State of Ohio’s Department of Administrative Services Cooperative Purchasing Program. These purchases include:

  • A Toolcat utility machine with snow blower from Bobcat Company for the public works department at a price not to exceed $55,506.62.
  • A dump body/plow package from Judco Truck Equipment for the public works department at a price not to exceed $64,435.
  • An International 2017 cab and chassis from Rush Truck Centers for the streets division of the public works department at a price not to exceed $85,839.05.

Pedestrian and bicycle transportation for schoolchildren

Council finalized authorization to the Ohio Department of Transportation to complete a project improving pedestrian and bicycle access for schoolchildren within Cleveland Heights.

RNC cooperative public safety services

Council authorized a memorandum of understanding with the City of Cleveland for intergovernmental cooperative and mutual aid for assistance in providing law enforcement services, including personnel and/or equipment, to ensure public safety during the 2016 Republican National Convention, July 18–21.

Heights Libraries 100th anniversary

On May 1, the Heights Libraries will kick off a celebration of their 100th anniversary. Mayor Stevens stressed the value of this community resource and urged residents to take advantage of the many services and benefits provided by the library.

LWV Observer: Katherine Solender.

These meeting summaries are abstracted from LWV observers’ written reports. The summaries have been edited and prepared by Anne McFarland, Charlene Morse and Maryann Barnes. To receive e-mail postings of full reports, send an e-mail to mbarnes9515@gmail.com or join through Google groups using “lwv-chuh observer reports” as a search phrase.

These reports contain member observation and selected highlights of public meetings and are not official statements of the Heights Chapter of the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland. This disclaimer must accompany any redistribution of these reports.

League of Women Voters

Observer Corps editor for the Heights Chapter of the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

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Volume 9, Issue 5, Posted 11:48 AM, 04.15.2016